Everyday compositions, by Delfina Carmona
Vibrant colors, light and shadows are the main protagonists of her work. Her photography portfolio consists of painting-like theatrical scenes with a tinge of dreamy tones. Meet Delfina Carmona, a photographer, photo stylist and art director from Argentina, currently living her life in her lovely Berlin flat, recently furnished with a couple of noo.ma products.
Get to know Delfina's take on creating visual compositions with everyday objects and using her home as a stage for ideas that appear spontaneously, even in her dreams.
Let’s start with a rather simple question: what kind of things should be a part of a perfect home?
I believe a perfect home is a place where you feel perfectly comfortable, where you can relax and be inspired, where you can tell stories, where you can connect with yourself and with others, where you can surround yourself with those elements and objects that bring you happiness, memories or that will somehow generate new memories for tomorrow.
It’s not a perfect place in the sense that it’s not a home taken from a magazine, but it’s a place where you live and where things happen. a place where you sleep, you work, you laugh, you cry, you cook, you drink wine, you read, you dance, you love. a bit messy, warm and where all those things you have been gathering live together. For me it’s very important that my home is a bright, colorful, luminous space where I can also feel I can create something. And that even in the darkest months of winter I can feel that spark of energy flowing in every corner.
We would say your home is quite unique: every now and then it almost incidentally transforms into a photo set, where a major role is played by yourself on a par with light and shadow. Could you tell us more about the process behind creating a photograph? Are you driven by spontaneity or do you rather opt for a thorough preparation?
You are right! My photography was always very linked to my daily life. I really like being able to have the whole house at my disposal to create small situations in each of the spaces, according to the changes of light throughout the day and in different seasons. And I think my work has a bit of both: spontaneity and at the same time daily practice.
I don't know if I need any particular preparation before I pick up the camera and start trying things out, but there is a lot of knowing what kind of light I like to use for my photos and at what times of the day I can make the best use of those resources. That's why there are times of the day when I like playing with elements I have around me until I create something I like. And any corner of the house can become a stage for a small scene with the right elements and lighting. Sometimes I do it just out of the necessity and the pleasure of doing something, regardless of the result. Other times I start from a previous idea that has occurred to me and that I want to see captured in an image.
In your photography, you often explore the beauty of everyday life: enjoying the meals and music, sunbathing in the golden hour rays – but at the same time you tend to add some spice to those everyday compositions, be it a theatrical pose or a number of citruses randomly scattered around. What image of daily routine emerges from your works?
I like to set up everyday scenes but somehow they are also a bit fictitious, like a scene in a movie, or daily situations you see in a theater where each character plays a role. And yes, there may be a photo where I appear in the middle of a casual scene taking place at home, but it’s still a re-enactment of an idea, of an image I’ve thought about and then reproduced.
My photos are always a small mise-en-scène, whether they seem casual or spontaneous or not, even if there is an unmade bed, if there is a messy still life on the table, or if it’s me with a crown of fruit on my head. And at the same time all the photos speak of me, of my thoughts, feelings, or moods. They are theatrical but at the same time honest and sincere with my way of being and seeing life – they are always self-referential.
Any corner of the house can become a stage for a small scene with the right elements and lighting.
Delfina Carmona, photographer
Tell us about your relationship with colors. There’s no doubt they’re a key part of your photography, but are they equally important with regards to your design choices?
Oh, color is so important in every way! Of course it is. As far as my work is concerned, color is one of the most important compositional elements. I like to come up with photos and ideas starting from colors. I like to have props and objects in some specific colors to inspire me. My palettes are usually quite vibrant and saturated. And at home it's not much different than that! Surrounding myself with color is important to me and it keeps me in a good mood.
I like small or big accents of color in different rooms of my house, that's why I fell in love with noo.ma's objects and furniture! The little electric blue Pouf where I can sit and choose which disc to put on the tray above my terracotta Met Mini makes it one of my new favorite corners of the house. I love lighting a candle in the small yellow or red candleholder, playing with the reflections of the red mirror, choosing a book from the yellow bookend. And in all these small daily actions, color can completely change my mood and add an extra dose of happiness.
Knowing that Berlin is relatively new to you, we wonder what enchanted you the most about the city? Do you have your favorite picturesque spots?
I love the vibe of Berlin. I'm still getting to know the city, still adjusting to everything: to the language, culture, to the weather which is very different from the one I experienced my whole life. So, there was a bit of a need to put myself in front of a new challenge with this change of habitat and see how my work adapts or mutates based on that.
But I find it a very inspiring city in many ways! I was looking forward to the experience of settling for some time in a European city and being able to work there. Berlin came out as the best choice for work, and we have many friends here who make us feel like family and make us miss home and our loved ones a little less. I’m very happy with this new life so far, with the new home surrounded by forest and I think the forest and parks are becoming one of my favorite places here.
But I also love the architecture of this city, especially all the modernist and brutalist buildings. I like the canals, the rivers that cross the city and the feeling that as I walk, in every corner something different is happening and that everything is so photogenic. In those places I think: oh, here I could do something.